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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Saturday I'm going to attempt to revive a beetle that was parked in a garage 15 years ago and left sitting. The tires are flat and I dunno what the gas situation is? It's a super beetle cabrio and looks to still be in excellent shape (dry garage with car cover on it since stored.

So my question is: How do I go about getting it back to running condition? Any suggestions?
 

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Drain the fuel tank. There's bound to be moisture in the tank, along with all kinds of sediment. If needed, you may need to replace the tank. Do a tune up with all new fluids. Clean any carbs and prime those and clean the air cleaners. Depending on its condition, thats all it may need.

Oh, and you'll probably be better off getting a new battery, of if you have a trickle charger you can try that but dont know if its been ran since being stored, so better off going with new.
 

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In addition to the gas tank,I would change all of the fluids (oil,trans) and replace the whole brake system. Remove the plugs and squirt a little oil in the cylinder.

Sounds like a hell of a find. I towed an old Rambler out of a garage once. It had been there over 10 years. Charged the battery and it started right up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeah, it's a yellow super beetle cabrio. It has 88k on it and was last registered in '89. The guy used it to drive around hawaii when he had a house there, sold the house back then, drove it in the garage, disconnected the battery and put a cover over it. Poof, 15 years later here it is and in excellent shape. Interior is like new, paint is not OEM yellow but in great shape, little or no rust and stored in a heated dry garage.I'm hoping I can just clean out the tank and see if it'll turn over on its own after pumping out the old gas and putting in some new.
 

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I cannot remember how to remove the fuel tank from a Super Beetle. Definitely look that up and make sure the tank is free of any crap that may have collected inside. Pull the fuel lines from the carb and use a Mityvac to clean them and check for leaks.

Also as above, pull the plugs and squirt some lube in there like PB, WD-40, or Marvel Mystery Oil. Give it a day to get into those dry rings and then turn the crank with a breaker bar. Clockwise from the back is the rotation iIrc. Doublecheck with an air-cooled source first.

Clean the carb well. There may be a little varnish built up though the mileage sounds low (wow) enough not to present too huge a problem.

The motor doesn't have a traditional oil filtering system. Instead, the oil is pumped from the bottom of the case up through a domed screen. Buy a new screen and gasket. They go in on the bottom of the case inside that circular cover... and will be a mess to change.

Check the cables for the heater box and temp control levers. They may be rusted through, but they're easy to replace. Check the heater box wrapped around the muffler... a pinhole leak will asphyxiate you in the drivers seat. :weirdo:

The brakes on Beetles are uber-easy. Just make sure the cables are in good shape and that the braking surfaces are all healthy. You might get away with the brakes that are on the car, but all new breakes shouldn't cost more than $200-300 for oem stuff. Disc-braking is an option, but an expensive one that will require a lot of swap work.

Pop out the back seat and check the voltage rating of the battery. You may find that this car is a 6V, generator fed setup though I think the last of those rolled off the line well before your car was built. Being a Hawaiian car, it may have even been built in Mexico but I'm not sure when that factory opened.

If the rubber pieces of the top are in decent shape, hit them with some silicone spray and see how they seal. Clean and feed the top nicely and it should serve you well.

If you've not got a copy, find one: How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive 19 Ed: A Manual of Step-by-Step Procedures for the Compleat Idiot
$17 at amazon.com and is the Bible of air-cooled Beetle lifecycle maintenance. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/t...002-3429421-7296052?v=glance&s=books&n=507846

Most importantly... post some pictures! :lol:
 

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Carlos Spicyweiner
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Awsome find! As everyone said pull the tank and REPLACE THE FUEL LINE while you're under there. It has one rubber piece that runs from the tank to the steel line that runs through the car.

REPLACE ALL THE FUEL LINES near the engine. They will be rotted also. It will cost you $5-10 to do all this and will save the car from burning up. Should only take about an hour to pull the tank and change all the lines in the engine compartment.

Check the cables for the heater box and temp control levers. They may be rusted through, but they're easy to replace. Check the heater box wrapped around the muffler... a pinhole leak will asphyxiate you in the drivers seat.
Excellent point, but if you don't turn on the heaters you're fine. If you smell exhaust put the top down or both windows. Carbon Monoxide kills you. Be carefull.

Pop out the back seat and check the voltage rating of the battery. You may find that this car is a 6V, generator fed setup though I think the last of those rolled off the line well before your car was built. Being a Hawaiian car, it may have even been built in Mexico but I'm not sure when that factory opened.
All Superbeetles were 12v. Only 66 and older were 6 volt. I think the first year for a SB was 71(?). While you're under there you will have a 85% chance of rust under that battery. Put a board there for now and worry about it later. If there is no rust you're lucky.

Sounds like a great find! How much?

Beetles are known for storing well and starting I purchase a 1955 once that had been sitting outside in a snow region for 20 plus years. So fuel down the carb and draining the tank plus a battery started it. It caught fire right after but that's standard for air cooled VW's! :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah we checked it out today. I changed the oil and cleaned out that little screen thing. Everything is clean on the car, no rust under the batter IIRC. I'm going to call an Indep vw place and see if they could clean out the tank, check out hoses, etc to get it going again.
The car tho is in amazing shape, its a '73 or '74, body by Karman. It actually was originally a Nevada car but went to hawaii and is now back here. Last registered in 1992, my mistake. Now the car isn't mine but its but is owned by a family friend, who lives in Switzerland. Basically once we get it running it'll be stored at his mother's (where it is now) and driven by me whenever I want so it'll practically be mine :D If he decides to sell it I'll get it for a very reasonable price.
Next week sometime I'll get some pics, its hard to believe how good a shape it's in. Even the top is in mint shape! 8)
 

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Carlos Spicyweiner
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chucchinchilla said:
Yeah we checked it out today. I changed the oil and cleaned out that little screen thing. Everything is clean on the car, no rust under the batter IIRC. I'm going to call an Indep vw place and see if they could clean out the tank, check out hoses, etc to get it going again.
The car tho is in amazing shape, its a '73 or '74, body by Karman. It actually was originally a Nevada car but went to hawaii and is now back here. Last registered in 1992, my mistake. Now the car isn't mine but its but is owned by a family friend, who lives in Switzerland. Basically once we get it running it'll be stored at his mother's (where it is now) and driven by me whenever I want so it'll practically be mine :D If he decides to sell it I'll get it for a very reasonable price.
Next week sometime I'll get some pics, its hard to believe how good a shape it's in. Even the top is in mint shape! 8)
The VW repair shop is a great idea. They are usually reasonable and will check for little things. Valves need to be adjusted every 5K, heads need to be tightened every 10K, brakes are not self adjusting, so you need to do those when the pedal hits the floor. Little things like too large/small a gap on the points are a major factor when you only have 60HP to mess with. Going off the year it will have a Dual Port 1600 which is as good as it gets in an old beetle. Too bad it's not yours.....the shape its in the car is probably worth $7-10K!!!

I still want to find an old Karmann Ghia convertible as a toy, but the prices for anything without rust are approaching 356 levels! :nervous:

PICS - PICS - PICS!
 

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1 - pick up the phone

2 - place classified ad to sell the car

3 - sell the car

4 - take a commission on the sale from your friend who owns the car

5 - pat yourself on the back for saving yourself time and making a little money on the side
 
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